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Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Let’s have a wonderful and victorious year!
As we enter into a new school year, NBEA has visions of a united front. We are in a time of assault from entities not made of our doing. This attack is predicated on removing those things that are the reason we exist as a union to begin with, such as collective bargaining and seniority. These rights exist because teachers just like you fought for them and won. Now corporate America not only wants to take your rights while raiding education budgets, but they now want to tell you what a good teacher is and is not.
Well, if anyone were to come to us and talk about the teachers of New Bedford, we would tell them that we are strong, powerful, and most of all united. We would tell them that we have some of the best teachers in the United States and that we are not going to be silent with our views. Our voices will be heard.
Charter and innovation schools will not solve the educational problems we face; they only strain the system financially and exacerbate the problems.
Our children lose out on enrichment classes such as art, music, and physical education as well as resources that would enable them to better compete in an economy that corporate America is trying to build for those that already have. What makes their assault worse are the statistics that they boast.
We have done our homework. They are spreading propaganda through traditional and social media about their ability to educate all children. We have the proof straight from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education website that they don’t mirror the image of change that they say they can make. Enrollment data from the DESE on the “Global Learning Charter School” and the “City on a Hill Charter School” prove that they lose most of their students, but they don’t air their failures, and they don’t expect you to be able to call them on their distortions of the facts.
In every public school there are those that are very easy to teach and others that are more challenging. In a public school, all children have the right to an equal education. In charter schools, those who are more challenging are not necessarily selected. If a few children get in that they find too difficult to educate, they send them back to us, but keep the money. By law, we have to educate all students regardless of their abilities or differences in learning and they too have to follow the same law, but they don’t. This needs to change!
New Bedford teachers do their best to ensure that all children are equally educated. They spend endless hours developing their lessons, listening to the pulse of their students, and responding to their needs while leading them forward to be able to compete in today’s global economy.
You are not alone in these threats to our existence. You have a union behind you that holds your needs near and dear. We are behind you fighting for you every day; here to echo your needs and concerns to the entities that do not respect your talents, or your dedication to your craft. We know that you work hard every day. We believe in your abilities and we know that in unity we will win this assault.
Our vision is that we all work together and make decisions for our common good and for the good of the children. Our desire is to connect with the community and all show our solidarity being united in the mission to stop the corporate take over. Together we are a village, and we all know that it takes a village to raise the children. So as a village, as those who have dedicated their lives to educating all children, we salute you!